That Kind of Tired

You don’t need a medical degree to figure out that the stress from life’s events wreaks havoc on the physical body. Emotional stress tears our bodies apart from the inside out. Our mouths get dry. We can’t breathe. Our hearts, heads, and stomachs ache. We’re tired but we can’t sleep. Even if we did, we’re not that kind of tired.

You also don’t need a degree in theology to figure out that extreme stress can wreak havoc on the spiritual body. Sadness, grief, and sorrow are heavy. Sometimes, our souls simply cannot bear the weight. We are not that kind of strong.

That heaviness seeps down deep into our bodies. Deep – down into the very marrow of our bones. Deeper – down into the core of our cells. Even deeper – down into our very DNA. 

Sometimes this heaviness is not apparent to the outside world. Other times, it can’t be hidden. Whether others can see it or not – it drags us down. It makes us tired – but not the kind of tired than can be fixed with a nap or a jog around the block. It’s not that kind of tired. 

When this kind of tired bears down on us, it is easy to fear that even God doesn’t see it. Yet Day Four’s passage reminds us that we aren’t alone in this fear:

Why do you complain, Jacob? Why do you say, Israel, ‘My way is hidden from the Lord; my cause is disregarded by my God?’ Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 40 27-31

We are not the only ones who’ve been the kind of tired that weaves through our souls like a stream carving a gorge through a plain. For centuries, that kind of tired has maimed wings and crippled steps. We are not alone just in our suffering. The same promise offered so many centuries ago, is still ours today: there are some kinds of tired that can only be restored by hope in God. His wings are our wings. His legs are our legs. His strength is our strength.

Where naps, exercise, extra devotional readings, and so many more of our own efforts fail to restore our souls – God stands at the ready. When we outfit ourselves with God’s hope, we can fly higher, run further, and walk steady. Hope is the “super power” that emboldens us to withstand the weary weight of this world. Hope revitalizes our souls so that we can face situations and circumstances that we’d never imagine for ourselves nor wish upon another.

Hope has our backs when we are that kind of tired.

Dear Father, this world has made us weary – right to the core of our very beings. There are days when our lungs labor to breath, our heads are too heavy to lift, and our souls sting. There are days when we cannot fight the weariness through our own strength. We NEED you. Lift us on your mighty wings. Carry us on your strong and steady legs. Let your Spirit strengthen within us HOPE in YOU! Set our sights on a day when weariness will no longer exist. This we pray through your son, Jesus Christ. Amen!


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